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The keynote sessions of the Raw Materials Summit 2019 will feature prominent speakers covering several topics of interest to our community such as societal challenges related to raw materials, new ventures in the raw materials and innovative materials domain, and the role of entrepreneurship and education in boosting the transfer of innovative ideas to the market.

DAY 1 - 20 May 2019

From 13:00 to 15:00 - Auditorium

Welcome to the Raw Materials Summit 2019

Dr. Karen Hanghøj, EIT RawMaterials

The challenge of urgency: meeting the scale and speed of climate mitigation targets in a commercially viable supply chain for materials

Prof. Julian Allwood FREng, Professor of Engineering and the Environment at the University of Cambridge

The scientific case for reducing global emissions radically within thirty years is completely clear, yet global emissions are still rising.   A quarter of all these emissions are due to industrial activity, mainly due to the production of materials, especially steel and cement, in mature processes which are already extremely efficient. The challenge of reducing emissions sufficiently and fast enough is therefore extremely demanding. In the longer term new processes may allow material production with less emissions, but there are no processes currently operating at scale that can be replicated fast enough to achieve short term targets.  Therefore the only short term option for reducing industrial emissions sufficiently is to reduce material production. There are many technical options to use materials more efficiently to deliver the same final services. This talk will present evidence of how this can be achieved, look at the business case for the required innovations and explore the policy support required to allow such reduced production within a market economy.

Battery materials take a flight

Thoralf Hagenbruch, McKinsey

The electric vehicle (EV) revolution is ushering in a golden age for battery raw materials, best reflected by a dramatic increase in expected demand for the key battery commodities – cobalt, lithium and nickel. In addition, the growing need for energy storage, e-bikes, electrification of tools, and other battery-intense applications is further increasing the interest in these commodities. However, the recent concerns regarding the future of the raw material supply availability for batteries and the impact of rising commodity prices on battery production costs have highlighted risks that may create divergent futures for these battery materials. The strategic response needed will likely differ across industry players such as automotive OEMs, battery manufacturers, mining and refining companies, and financial investors; for all players there is a growing imperative to understand the complexities and dynamics of this rapidly changing. The presentation will provide an overview about McKinsey’s perspective on vehicle electrification and discuss the impact on the demand-supply balance for key battery materials.

DAY 2 - 21 May 2019

From 09:00 to 10:30 - Auditorium

EIT RawMaterials Acceleration Programmes

Dr. Andreas Klossek, EIT RawMaterials

From idea to market, the business creation programs of the EIT RawMaterials aim to boost innovation from start-ups throughout the raw materials value chain: from exploration to mining and processing, also encompassing recycling, the cross-cutting theme of circular economy as well as new and innovative materials with improved performances. Our Accelerator program aims to support start-ups to rapidly develop their business and customer understanding so that they become ready for business in the above raw materials industries. The programme stimulates the introduction to customers in the EIT RawMaterials partner network who are willing to adopt innovations. It also connects local and national ecosystems to the Pan-European network of pilot & test infrastructure facilities as well as potential customers. Our Booster program provides seed funding for new businesses to be accelerated, enabling quick testing of new technologies, coaching and business development support to validate ideas with customer prospects. An overview of our start-up portfolio will be provided in the presentation, with some highlights on recent success cases.

Investments in high-impact ventures

Dr. Jim Totty, Earth Capital

Investment opportunities in materials continue to grow as global industry sectors face the challenges of the Sustainable Revolution. With sectors such as energy and auto facing existential threats over the next 20 years, disruptive materials solutions offer strong investment opportunities. We have seen tremendous success stories in the past with Gallium Nitride for LED’s and Cerium Oxide for solid oxide fuel cells. However there are many future Big Challenges demanding investment. Lithium cobalt chemistries for batteries have significant supply chain issues that require urgent innovation. Rare earths for magnets are seeing strong demand side growth from markets such as high capacity factor wind energy, but there is constant tension with supply side constraints. Many industries are facing critical financial and environmental pressures that are driving them to adopt new solutions in resource, energy and water efficiency. Throughout global industry sectors, there are numerous exciting sustainable investment opportunities to invest in disruptive high impact materials innovation.

Leveraging effective interrelationships between academia and industry for business success in industry 4.0

Dr. Stefano Odorizzi, EnginSoft

Creating a long-lasting and satisfying business out of the process of technology transfer is quite a unique experience, particularly when the technologies involved concern methods that allow us to virtually simulate the physical behaviour of the objects we want to produce and to analyse their different performances or functions in varied application domains from mechanics to fluid dynamics, acoustics, electromagnetism, and so on.


Today I am here to describe the experience of EnginSoft, a company that we created in 1983 when the technologies I alluded to previously were limited to a few scarce application possibilities mostly used in research. Since its inception, EnginSoft has always been concerned with understanding if, how, where and within what limits these technologies could become useful in the design and production processes of companies. Staying true to this mission, EnginSoft as accompanied the technological evolution that today represents the heart of the digitalization for Industry 4.0.


The rather articulated path that EnginSoft has followed can be analysed from various perspectives: thematically, the ability to leverage the innovation inherent in numeric and virtual simulation; strategically, relationships with universities and the ability to create effective interactions between them and the industrial world; from a technology transfer perspective, based on the belief that knowledge and hence training are the only real roots of any evolution; from a networking perspective, it represents a business model that generates access to networking capital; and, finally, of the potential paths that can lead to success for innovative start-ups with new ideas.

DAY 3 - 23 May 2019

From 09:00 to 11:00 - Auditorium

What does it mean to be entrepreneurial?

Prof. Thomas M. Cooney, Technological University Dublin (TU Dublin)

Entrepreneurship has traditionally been viewed as the act of creating a new venture. However, entrepreneurship is a mindset and a way of behaving that can be applied in many different contexts. In a fast-changing business world that is seeking constant innovation, this talk will discuss how employees, management and organisations can become more entrepreneurial for the benefit of all relevant stakeholders, It will also identify the key challenges that different stakeholders might face and how they can be overcome. The talk will explore how today's employees do not want to be managed in a traditional manner, but instead wish to co-create their planned outputs. Understanding what it means to be entrepreneurial can enable people to work together towards an exciting new organisational future.

Raw Materials Academy

Dr. Rima Dapous, Education Director EIT RawMaterials

The Raw Materials Academy is the overarching brand of all the education activities of EIT RawMaterials. These range from innovative education projects launched via calls and run by the Innovation Community’s partners to a number of centrally operated projects. Activities across the entire ecosystem of learners – PhD students, Masters’ students, industrial partners, professionals within the raw materials sector, and wider society – foster new ways of learning and teaching by connecting academia, industry and research organisations. The aims of the Raw Materials Academy are:


  • To introduce society as a whole to the importance and relevance of raw materials and incite interest in topics related to raw materials

  • To train current and future stakeholders to the technical standards required by the raw materials industry today – contextually across the entire raw materials value chain

  • To foster the entrepreneurial and innovation skills, knowledge and attitudes needed for the entre- and intrapreneurs of tomorrow

EIT RawMaterials Alumni

Denis Gontcharov, President EIT RawMaterials Alumni

After a brief introduction of the EIT RawMaterials Alumni, the "Company Challenge", an event that is going to be held in September 2019, will be introduced.

The main idea for the EIT RawMaterials Alumni workshop will be then introduced; the workshop is a real-life scenario that demonstrates how large and diverse groups make better decisions under uncertainty than small groups. The key message that wants to be broadcasted is: “collaborating, together with the EIT RawMaterials Alumni and many other diverse stakeholders, will lead to better decisions for the raw materials sector”.

From 14:30 to 15:30 - Auditorium

Raw material markets between complexity and actual data

Luis Tercero Espinoza, Fraunhofer ISI

The talk starts with a global view of raw material markets and the factors determining supply and demand for raw materials. Since there is no equation of state for raw material markets, we then dive into two separate attempts at characterization: dynamic stock and flow modelling and quantitative scenarios for future demand for certain raw materials with a focus on electrified mobility. We conclude with implications for recycling and the contribution of secondary raw materials to overall supply.

Metal demand for renewable electricity generation in the Netherlands; navigating a complex supply chain

René Kleijn, Leiden University

In order to be able to achieve the 1.5 C climate goal we need a global transition to a zero-emission energy system within three decades. This will require a significant upscaling of current mining of metals that are crucial for the renewable energy system like neodymium, dysprosium, lithium, cobalt and copper. Calculations for the Netherlands show that production of  wind  turbines  and  photovoltaic  (PV)  solar  panels already requires a significant share of the annual global production of some critical metals. Safeguarding the supply of the required critical metals needs greater attention, since supply and demand cannot be guaranteed through a free market. Mining of the required ores takes place in a few select countries, and refining of these ores is concentrated in even fewer countries. Geopolitical  powers  will  shift  from  oil-dominated countries to critical metal-dominated countries. A second important issue is the slow scaling rate for critical  metal  production:  opening  a  new  mine  takes 10 to 20 years and large capital investments, making it  difficult  to  meet  a  rapid  increase  in  global  demand with  a  comparable  increase  in  global  supply.  Mining corporations  require  a  global,  long-term  investment assurance to be able to fund new mining and refining activities. The supply chain of critical metals is extremely complex.  Not  all  theoretical  reserves  are  technically (or  economically)  extractable,  and  with  ore  grades declining, mining requires an increasing volume of water and  energy.  Furthermore,  mining  is  often  associated with significant environmental and social costs. Scarcity  in  supply  will  lead  to  increased  competition between  different  applications  and  between  different countries. Increased global use across a broad range of applications will lead to further interdependencies year on year. Shortages or hiccups in the supply chain could hamper the energy transition: a delay we cannot afford as climate change accelerates. To  ensure  sufficient  supply  of  metals,  a global  and robust climate policy needs to be implemented hand-in-hand with circular economy strategies to reduce critical metal dependence. To  avoid  future  scarcity,  three  solution  pathways  are identified: 1)Reduce critical metal use through substitution 2) Increase circular design and recycling efforts: embed circular design principles into the production of  wind  turbines  and  PV  panels,  to  enable  future reuse  of  components  and  materials  at  end-of-life. 3)  Increase  recycling  efforts  (technology  and knowledge)  to  be  able  to  retrieve  metals  for  which physical disassembly is not possible. 4)Consider a European mining industry: Europe is almost completely dependent on foreign supply of critical metals, although the continent has some reserves.  Mining  in  Europe  will  be  confronted  with administrative  and  social  hurdles,  but  high-tech solutions can help overcome these. 

Thomas Cooney
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